Home Education: Welsh Water Reservoir Trip

In September I met a lovely teacher at the Cardiff Bay UKRO Event who  introduced me to her work with Welsh Water. Following this I booked a Welsh Water Educational Visit for a large group of home educators in December.

Home Education: Welsh Water Reservoir Trip

I booked the trip to the Welsh Water Reservoir in Cilfynydd within a few weeks and since 2019 went so fast, before we knew it, it was time to wrap up warm and head out for our educational day trip.

Before I get into the actual visit, I’d like to say how amazing the communication and information provided ahead of the trip was. I was sent lots of detailed information and replies to emails were prompt and helpful, I couldn’t have had a more positive and uplifting experience with them!

On the day of the trip there were a few cancellations (December always brings out the bugs, eh?) but I was given a very special hug from the teacher I met in the bay, so my day started out on a very positive high…

Ahead of the visit we were instructed to wear wellies, waterproofs and bring a packed lunch. I think this was excellent advice as we all ended up a bit mucky (Molly was in her element!) and it was very cold (although the classic Welsh rain held off, phew!).

When booking the trip I was allowed to choose 2 topics/activities from their list of very interesting things to do. I chose the African Village and (due to the overflowing river) Pond Dipping. We were split into two groups and both groups completed a task in the morning, then had lunch, then swapped activities.

The classrooms were very interesting and there was so much information about wasted water, pollution and what not to flush all around us. I loved how they all really got stuck into the subject of water, learning facts, answering questions and getting involved in more physical activities.

 

African Village

Welsh Water Reservoir Uganda Village sign post

This was the entrance to our village

 

We started this activity off by looking at Uganda and the way of life for those without water in close proximity. 3 hour walks to dirty water and toilets that have no sanitation was indeed an eye opener for George and Molly.

After this we were led to a little village where we were divided up into families. The main teacher was our elder, and she led us to the river to collect water for the day. We had a long walk down the river and we worked together in our family units to collect as much water as possible.

 

Welsh Water Reservoir a man collecting water and a child standing by

Welsh Water Reservoir children pouring water into their containers

Welsh Water Reservoir two children carrying water from the river

 

When we returned to the village we had to complete certain tasks within our little huts and see how much water we had left at the end. The answer = not a lot!

It truly made us think about how lucky we are to have fresh running water, toilets and the ability to wake up everyday without even thinking about where our water comes from.

In the (pretend) morning we all woke up to a new pump that had been installed in the village. Some children did a little roleplay for the opening ceremony, it was very sweet and they performed their lines really well! Once we’d celebrated it was time to do the chores using the pump and we were able to see how much quicker this process was.

This speedy improvement meant we had more time as a village to create things or grow food to sell. George was excited with this part because he was given fake money!

After this was over we all sat and discussed all the things we’d learnt before having a break for lunch…

 

Pond Dipping

For the second half of the day we were situated by the pond, nets and pots at the ready! We were instructed as to where we should ‘dip’ and we were given trays with water in them to tip out our nets to discover the creatures within the pond. We were also given pots to separate some of the creatures because a few were meat eaters and we didn’t want them eating our other discoveries…

 

Welsh Water Reservoir children looking at their discoveries beside a pond

Welsh Water Reservoir dragonfly nymph

Welsh Water Reservoir information and identification sheets

 

We spent quite a while at the pond and found some incredible creatures. We were given information sheets so we could decipher what was what and when we’d collected everything together we headed back inside the classroom to check everything out through the microscopes!

 

Welsh Water Reservoir a man looking through a microscope and his child beside him

Welsh Water Reservoir newt

George and Warren loved this part of the day, and they spent a lot of time using the microscopes to see the little creatures close up.

Soon it was time to head home and we all said our goodbyes. I left feedback (10/10 by the way…) and there were hugs and smiles all round. Afterwards I received educational worksheets for all the children to use if they so wished, a great way to finish off the trip!

Overall the trip was very well organised, very educational and we were warmly welcomed by the staff.  Our children were enthralled by the teachers and their very sweet and gentle approach to them, and I can’t recommend this place enough!

If you live near a Welsh Water Reservoir I’d highly recommend getting in touch with them to arrange a trip, you won’t regret it! Click to find out more about the educational side of Welsh Water or visit their Twitter page!

I hope you’ve enjoyed this post all about our Welsh Water Educational Visit, it has been a pleasure to write and I hope we get to go again one year.

 

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